Coming Out of the Closet
1 year ago
Is the “F-word” the worst thing you can call a woman?
Recently I accidentally came out of the closet.
Now before the rumor mill begins buzzing I don’t mean that closet (although thanks to my height, in tv makeup I’ve probably been mistaken for a drag queen more times than I care to count, but that’s another blog post.) I’m referring to the closet that many childless, career-oriented, single women find themselves boxed in: that of a closeted feminist.
I didn’t even know that I was in the closet until I mentioned via social media that I had attended a screening of the terrific new HBO documentary on feminist icon Gloria Steinem, “Gloria: In Her Own Words.” A self-professed fan of mine expressed “surprise” and later horror that I would identify with that “feminist stuff” considering how (allegedly) detrimental it has been to society.
I initially assumed he was joking. After all I write about women’s issues so much that during a recent interview about my new book (shameless plug alert) The GQ Candidate, a reporter asked me if I consider myself first and foremost a women’s issues writer. I had never given the matter much thought, explaining that I write about issues that I find interesting and consider important. As a woman it’s probably not a coincidence that a number of those issues affect women, among them reproductive rights, a topic I care a great deal about and have stated that I consider one of the most important political issues of our time.
But his criticism got me thinking. I don’t know that I have used the “f-word” once in any of my writing—except to describe other people like Steinem—but never to describe myself.